A Problem of the Heart

July 23, 2019
The Bible says, “Lord, help me control my tongue; help me be careful what I say.” (Psalm 141:3) That might be a good verse to memorize. Say it in your mind when you’re about to lose it. “Lord, help me …”
What happens when you squeeze a tube of toothpaste?  What’s going to come out? You’re like: Is this a trick? Duh, if you squeeze a tube of toothpaste, toothpaste is going to come out!
Well, in the exact same way, when life starts to squeeze you, when life starts to squeeze your heart, when you’re under pressure, do you know what comes out? Whatever’s inside! So, if I’m always losing it and getting angry and lashing out at people, I can’t blame everybody around me. I can’t blame the circumstances. It’s what’s coming out of me. Pressure just reveals what’s inside of me. Let me tell you something about anger: The heart of the problem is a problem of the heart. When you’re under pressure and you start taking it out on the people around you, you want to say, “Holy Cow! I don’t know where that came from.” Yes, you do. It came from inside you. It comes from your heart. The key is to change what’s inside. Let me say it again: The key is to change what’s inside.
If you’ve got a well and the well is giving you bad water, fixing the pump isn’t going to fix the problem. You’re still going to be pumping up dirty water. That’s the problem with a lot of self-help books. They tell you how to fix the pump. But they don’t tell you how to fix the water in the well. Until you fix that, things aren’t going to change.
So what do you do? How do you make things different? You let your life be filled with God’s Spirit. That’s changing the water in the well. That’s getting to the “heart” of the problem.
I’ve found that when I get full of myself, when I’m filled with Jeff, almost anything can annoy me and upset me. But if I’m filled with God’s Spirit, almost nothing can upset me. I’ve got a power – a power greater than my own human power, a power greater than anything in this world.
How do you get filled with God’s Spirit? Don’t make it too complicated. It just means you look to God instead of yourself. You pray a very simple two-word prayer: “Help me.”
The three things that cause anger – hurt, frustration, and fear – Jesus can heal. Jesus can heal your hurting heart with his love. Jesus can replace your frustration with his peace. Jesus can replace your insecurity with his power.
Did you ever see a baby in its mother’s arms? If you pick up a crying baby and hold that baby close, and it feels warm and safe and secure, that baby stops crying. It stops being angry. Today’s the day to let your Father hold you close. When you feel accepted and secure, when you feel totally loved, your anger is going to disappear.

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